The relationship that my mother and I share has an open communication climate. She is in the power role, but her communicative approaches remove any barriers that might exist because of a hierarchical nature. For instance, she minimizes her role towards me as a mother and considers herself to be more of a friend. I don’t ever recall my mom ever saying “You will do this-or-that because I am your mother,” or “Mother knows best.” Getting me to do something usually involves a discussion based on reason.
The spontaneity of our relationship is important. If my mom doesn’t like a certain behavior of mine, she tells me straightforwardly. There is no manipulation through loaded questions or “game playing.” This allows me to be straightforward with her, and if I was discontent with her behavior, I feel free to tell her so, as well.
Our open communication is perhaps more strongly rooted in the rewards of self-disclosures than anything else. The numerous times that I have revealed aspects of myself that many children would consider a no-no to tell their parents, I have been received with honesty, unconditional love, and leveled criticism. In other words, I felt closer to my mom rather than rejected by her. So, I am encouraged to tell her more. The more I told her, the closer I felt towards her. Now, my mother is one of the two people in my life who know me the best.